I’m not the first person to blog about the Guerilla Poetics Project, and I doubt I’ll be the last. I found their website recently while surfing the net, and my first thought was, “Where have I been?” Ah, I’m always late for everything. But just in case there’s one person out there who hasn’t heard, please kick off your shoes and pull up a chair.
The idea behind the Guerilla Poetics Project is relatively simple. They print short poems on small cards called broadsides. The broadsides are mailed to poets and “operatives” who hide the poems inside target books at bookstores and libraries. Nobody is hurt. Nothing gets destroyed. But the poetry is smuggled out into the world for people to see. Woot!
People who find the poems are given a website where they can register the poem they find.
I managed to scrape up twenty five bucks (printing costs, okay?), and I’m tapping my foot and waiting for the broadsides to come in the mail. If you don’t have the entire amount, I’m guessing you could get together with a few friends to join. It would also be a great project for a community workshop or even…gasp…in the classroom.
I’m not sure about all the details, but there is a lot of information and a forum for questions on their website. Take a look at their link and be sure to read the manifesto and all the information first.
Before you join, please do keep one thing in mind. This is not about self promotion. I think you can submit a couple of poems if you join, but you may never get chosen. I’m still learning, so I’m not the person to ask. It looks as if the operatives can vote on the poems that are chosen for publication.
However, the idea is not to build up a name for ourselves, but to share worthwhile poetry with the world. From the poetry I have read on the site, these poets are very worthy and have paid their dues. Their poems blew me away when I read them. There is a list of poets on the website, and a lot of excellent links.
One of the poets featured on the broadsides, William Taylor Jr., is excellent. He was also featured in a very interesting interview by Scot Young at his website, Be Not Inhospitable to Strangers. Scot’s interview with William Taylor, Jr. is at this link: http://midwestpoet.wordpress.com/2008/06/23/willaim-taylor-jr-interview/
Now, come on, Guerilla dudes. Hurry up with the broadsides! I’m ready to put on my gloves and slide down to the university bookstore. If they haven’t banned me again.